The development of an Emotional Regulation Scale for Adolescents***

Monique Strauss, Jacques Eugene Raubenheimer, Daleen Campher, Charika Coetzee, Amorise Diedericks, Heidi Danielle Gevers, Karla Green, Sandre van Niekerk


Emotional regulation is an important skill enabling or disabling the occupational engagement of adolescent clients. Evaluation is a key concept in the occupational therapy process, informing treatment approaches and outcomes. The authors could not identify a scale measuring emotional regulation strategies used by adolescent in the literature. A quantitative, descriptive study was done following a process of scale development. A survey with 78 items was designed which 404 adolescents from a tertiary institution completed. From the results, a provisional scale was developed, measuring emotional regulation strategies used by adolescents. The scale has 39 items, consisting of five emotional regulation strategy categories, named Comfort and Sharing, Antisocial behaviour, Creative Activities, Physical Activities and Eating. A confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) model proved the provisional scale, as well as the items, to be reliable. Further research for the development and the refinement of this scale is recommended. The use of an emotional regulation scale could assist the occupational therapist in understanding the adolescent client’s emotional regulation strategies or lack thereof.

KEY WORDS: Emotional regulation, Adolescents, Structural Equation Modelling

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ISSN 0038-2337 (print), ISSN 2310-3833 (online)

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